Open main menu

By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

The Congress of the United States has set aside the first day of May as Law Day, U.S.A.

This year will mark the Nation's twenty-second annual celebration of Law Day-a special day for reflection on our heritage of individual liberty and for rededication to the observance of the rule of law.

The rule of law is not automatic. Each citizen must accept a share of responsibility to administer and obey the law, if the rights and opportunities of all citizens are to be preserved.

Americans also have a responsibility and a constitutional right to change the law by orderly process, when such change is needed. Our forefathers gave us this birthright, so that the Nation and its people might remain free.

In the words of Thomas Jefferson, "Laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind."

The theme selected in recognition of Law Day, 1979, therefore, is most appropriate: "Our Changing Rights."

In a rapidly changing world, it is vital that we preserve and strengthen our ability to respond to the needs for legitimate change while safeguarding the rights of all citizens.

Now, THEREFORE, I, JIMMY CARTER, President of the United States of America, invite the American people to observe Tuesday, May 1, 1979, as Law Day, U.S.A., and to reflect upon individual and collective responsibilities for the effective administration of the law.

I call upon the legal profession, the courts, educators, clergymen, and all interested individuals and organizations to mark the twenty-second nationwide observance of Law Day, U.S.A., with programs and events which underscore our Nation's devotion to the principle of equal justice for all. To that end, I call upon all public officials to display the flag of the United States on all government buildings on that day.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-seventh day of March, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and third.

JIMMY CARTER

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:02 a.m., March 28, 1979]

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).